New System Administrator Cert

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Test Yourself: SAGE Offering Beta for System Administrator Certification


SAGE, the System Administrator Guild, has developed a certification
program for system administrators. Beta exams for the first
certification level, cSAGE, are available until Feb. 17, 2002. Designed
for junior-level system administrators with one to two years of
experience, cSAGE will be released on March 26, 2002.



With about 6,000 members, SAGE has committed time and resources to
ensuring the value of its new program. Stacy Gildenston, managing
consultant of SAGE certification, compared the organization’s commitment
to that of the Linux Professional Institute (LPI):



“SAGE and LPI have a relationship as colleagues, but more importantly,
we share a similar philosophy as professional organizations with
certification programs based on quality standards and a professional
analysis,” she said.



To earn the cSAGE, candidates must pass two exams, a multi-platform core
exam and a platform-specific module exam. The first module to be offered
is the UNIX module, and a Microsoft Windows module is in development.
Beta exams are currently available at a reduced rate of $100 per exam.
The beta exams for both the core and the UNIX module will be available
at VUE testing centers through Feb. 17, 2002. Once the program goes live
on March 26, exams will be $225 each.



“At the end of the day, once the exams are live, we would expect most
people to do both in a single sitting because of the type of knowledge
you would need to pass either of those exams,” said Gildenston. “Either
you know it or you don’t.”



If you’re looking for ways to prepare for cSAGE certification, try
checking out the SAGE certification Web site at
The cSAGE Study Guide can be found at SAGE also
suggests some reading material in its Candidate Handbook, online at



SAGE plans to develop additional levels of certification, which could
include more advanced levels or classifications like webmaster or
security. In addition, SAGE will develop modules covering other
operating systems.



For more information, check out


What’s Hot?



In RHI Consulting’s semi-annual Hot Jobs Report, 18 percent of CIOs
surveyed said networking is the fastest-growing job in their
departments. So how can you get started down the path to a networking



How about CompTIA’s updated Network+ credential? That’s right—due to
demand for networking professionals with hands-on experience, CompTIA
revised the Network+ exam. The new exam (#N10-002) was released Jan. 31,



“We decided to update the Network+ certification program as a result of
focus groups that validated that there were new technologies that needed
to be introduced into the certification,” said Tancy Stanbery, the
program manager for Network+.



So what’s different about the new exam? For one thing, it requires more
hands-on experience. Before, CompTIA recommended 18 to 24 months of
general IT experience for Network+ candidates, but now candidates are
expected to come to the testing table with nine months of experience in
network support or administration.



“The certification exam itself has more problem-based scenarios, where
candidates really have to understand how a network is put together and
how the elements talk to each other in order to answer the questions,”
said Walt Pumphrey, IBM curriculum architect and chair of the Network+
Subject Matter Expert Committee. “So it really does require more hands-
on experience than just theoretical knowledge.”



The revised exam will cover newer technologies, including wireless
networking and gigabit Ethernet. In addition, it places more emphasis on
Linux/UNIX operating systems, the AppleTalk network protocol and wide
area network (WAN) technologies. Not surprisingly, the exam also places
heavier emphasis on security.



The categories covered on the revised exam are:



* Media and Topologies: 20 percent
* Protocols and Standards: 25 percent
* Network Implementation: 23 percent
* Network Support: 32 percent



For more information on Network+, see



Where Do You Go to Study?



Back in October 1990, Bart Simpson failed a history test and engaged the
assistance of Martin Prince (the class geek, for you non-Simpsons fans)
to help bring his grades up. Bart’s side of the bargain was to make
Martin cool. Martin’s first order of business was to straighten up
Bart’s study area. He even brought a fern.



Being something of a geek myself, I can’t promise to make you cool. But
I do know a lot about finding the right space for study. Back when I was
going to college, I had all kinds of roommates: noisy, interfering,
interrupting and, worst of all, tempting. When I wanted to study, I had
to get out of the house. But you don’t have to, as long as you can
convince those you live with to give you some space.



So what are the key elements of the proper study place?



First and foremost, get comfortable. Make sure you have what you need
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